Saturday, 9 October 2010

Top 10 Female Philosophers

Just to prove that Philosophy is not an 'all male affair', here's a list of the Independent's 'Top 10 female philosophers'.

Some are still alive...

You can see the full list at:

Neil Turnbull

Friday, 8 October 2010

RIP Claude Lefort 1924-2010

Perhaps one of the lesser known of French poststructuralists, Claude Lefort utilised both phenomenology and Maussian sociology in the service of political theory. He was particularly known for his analysis of totalitarianism. This was effected by the famous Socialism or Barbarism journal, along with JF Lyotard, which analyzed the relationship between corporatism and state. Lefort was also noted for his critique of Soviet beuareaucratic style socialism, particularly in left-wing French thought. Put in the bluntest terms, Lefort's most basic point is that fascism elides the distinction between the state and the company in an organistic unity. Lefort was one of the progenitors of the agonistic conception of democracy, which would be taken up by Laclau and Mouffe in different contexts. Lefort theorised that democracy worked best when it was founded on argument, dissensus and a multiplicity of opinions. He also, following Ernst Kantorowicz analysis of the kings two bodies, theorised the idea that democracy operates through an 'empty sovereignty' after the transition from monarchism to democracy.

Monday, 4 October 2010

Are Baby Boomers Responsible for the Current Economic Crisis?

We have recently seen a spate of publications blaming the current economic crisis on the excessive hedonism and agressive individualism of so-called 'baby boomer culture'.

The baby-boomers were the children born in the 15 years after the second world war(1945-60). They were people whose formative years were the 1960s and it was people from this generation that oversaw the worst financial crisis since the 1930s (and the worst recession since the second world war).

This claim has recently been echoed by Will Hutton in the Observer. Here's the link for those who are interested:

What interests me is whether this generation - sometimes called 'the me generation' - has sold us all a 'very big lemon' and left us with one hell of a mess to clear up.

Should we blame them? If so, how should we learn from their mistakes?